OutNAbout says, "While I can understand the desire to incite their fans, generate membership revenue and defend their personally favored form of outdoor recreation, none of that is a very good basis for setting public policy. Of course, the backers of the bill are also selfish in the sense that they would like to visit at least some of the land in the manner they enjoy. But if that manner is as quiet, human-powered, sustainable and environmentally benign (or more so) as currently allowed uses (foot and hoof), then we should all endeavor to accommodate it on at least some of our publicly-owned Wilderness lands."
Out can't seem to fathom any altruistic reason a person or group of people might value wilderness for its own sake beyond selfish gain. I guess today's me-me-mine mindset is blind to the idea that Wilderness is not about recreation or necessarily benefiting any individual person. It is about setting aside some of god's green earth for wildness to run wild. Domination by man has subdued most landscapes and the trend continues. "Compromise" keeps cutting the cookie in half. That's a recipe for exponential loss of wildlands, and in these much touted legislated "collaborative" "compromises" Wilderness never even gets half.
Bikes would shrink wildlands even more because they travel much faster than foot or horse users. Why do bikers want it all? Why are they not satisfied to ride on the 95+% of public land available for bikes? Blind selfishness trumps nature and will until humans grow some humility and generosity of spirit. Wreckcreation is doing just that
The Bitterroot National Forest has seriously undermined the work and the function of the Bitterroot Restoration Committee. The BRC is supposed to develop proposals for restoration after discussion and reaching consensus. The BRC initiated a Westside proposal that was about a third the size of the final BNF project. The BNF claimed BRC support for the much larger project prior to the BRC being able to finalize their proposal, let alone reach consensus on the unfinished proposal. This subterfuge and abuse of process shows what "collaboration" means to the USFS. It is simply a charade of "finding common ground amongst traditional adversaries". The USFS either finds a group that will agree with whatever the FS wants to do, or hijack the process to do what they want to do.
The BNF has squandered any trust they might have had with local landowners and they have made moot the work done by the BRC, reducing it to a rubber stamp at best for the BNF agenda. And, since when is roadbuilding and a new bridge considered "restoration"? Calling this project "Collaborative" and "Restoration" is sheer deception and makes meaningful public discussion impossible.
Aside from the question of whether the logging (and the new roads and bridge necessitated by log hauling) will accomplish what the FS has in mind on this timber sale, the public process demonstrated by FS planners on the Westside project leaves no doubt about their low regard for meaningful involvement by the owners of the public forests.
While steamrolling toward their preconceived plan the Bitterroot National Forest undermined the process of the Bitterroot Restoration Committee, a "consensus-based", "collaborative" group meant to find common ground amongst "traditional adversaries" in the hopes of avoiding litigation on proposed projects. The BNF hijacked a much smaller BRC proposal in the area while it was being discussed by the BRC and before the smaller (about 1/3 the size) proposal could be finalized, let alone find consensus. The work of the BRC was made moot; "collaboration" was shown to be a ruse; and the purpose of "collaboration" was negated. The name of the timber sale is loaded with rhetorical disinformation. It is called, the Westside Collaborative Restoration project. It is "westside" but not "collaborative" or "restoration". Those words are added by the FS in order to access pots of taxpayer money and shortcut public process available for logging timber sales that qualify as such. This timber sale does not. The BRC has become simply a discussion group loaded in the timber industry and FS favor used to greenwash FS projects. The FS continues to bastardize the English language, making George Orwell look like he lacked imagination in double-speak.
From a friend:
There have been a number of studies on the effects of recreation activities on elk. A recent literature review by McCorquodale (2013) with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife summarizes research on ways roads (and motorized trails) may potentially affect elk: 1) physiologic and energetic effects, 2) effects on distribution and habitat use, and 3) effects on vulnerability to mortality and, potentially, population dynamics. Naylor (2006, Naylor et al. 2009) found that off-road recreation produces a change in elk behavior. Results of studies in a 3,590 acre section of the study area demonstrated that activity budgets of elk were altered during exposure to off-road recreation disturbance in a 25,000 acre elk summer range in Oregon at the Starkey Experimental Forest and Range. Elk increased their travel time during most disturbance, which reduced time spent feeding or resting. Elk travel time was highest during ATV exposure, followed by exposure to mountain biking, hiking, and horseback riding. Elk reacted negatively to ATV traffic at distances up to 1,000 meters and had a high probability of fleeing if they were near an ATV trail when ATVs were detected. It appeared that elk would habituate to horseback riding, but not to mountain biking.
In one well-designed study, Wisdom et al. (2004) observed increases in elk flight response and movement rates related to human recreational use in the same 3,590 acre section of the Starkey Experimental Forest and Range in Oregon. Elk flight response was greatest for ORV use, followed by mountain biking, and finally human hikers and horseback riders. "Higher probabilities of flight response occurred during ATV and mountain bike activity, in contrast to lower probabilities observed during hiking and horseback riding.
I just read this column on HCN site and see that the reader comments are weighted similarly to this site. Vanishingly few responses agree with Mr. Stroll. Many comment on his narcissistic arrogance and convoluted/distorted 'logic'. I'm beginning to think Ted Stroll may be a godsend to the Wilderness and to those people who value Wilderness without mountain bikes. Your crusade may make you feel good, but it's not helping your cause.Give Ted the mic! Go Ted; you da man!
As soon as I heard Ted's line I figured he was an attorney. Sorry to most attorneys, but who else could turn plain language into such a meaningless swamp of obfuscation. There is one man alive who helped carry the Wilderness Act to its near unanimous vote. Ted, you could ask him about the original intent rather than weave your web of deceit and befuddlement. I can tell you, he knows the intent was to ban mechanized transport from Wilderness. The mountain bikers are heading for a serious backlash if they don't back off of demanding to ride everywhere. Righteous selfishness seems to be considered a virtue within the cadre of mountain bikers who want it all. Wilderness is not primarily about human use; it is a last remnant of land where nature gets to run wild. Try to see beyond yourself Ted. You may not yet know the virtue of generosity of spirit, but you may be inspired once you try it out....even tho it won't provide the adrenaline that leading your personal 'heroic' charge or shredding an alpine slope in the Wilderness seems to give you. Be happy with what you have and leave some room for wild nature.
If Lance offers some facts to support his opinions maybe he can fill us in on his interpretation of "mechanical transport" when he says, "It all comes down to the interpretation of what mechanized transport means." That seems akin to Bill Clinton's confusion about what the meaning of 'is' is. Of course a bike is mechanical transport.
To clear up further confusion, I hope Lance can understand that some groups and individuals support mountain biking, but emphatically do not support the ride anywhere you want efforts by some mountain bikers to alter the Wilderness Act to allow their special, self-serving interest. That would open the Act to erosion by a myriad of self-serving interests.
All Comments »
Missoula News/Independent Publishing |
Powered by Foundation